In today’s collection of notable posts from the NHL blogosphere: A salute to Peter Forsberg…20 predictions for the Calgary Flames…A cheer for James Neal…A detailed breakdown of hockey fights over the years…Addressing the issues which inspired Don Cherry’s recent rant…Cherry goes back in time.
GREATEST HOCKEY LEGENDS: Joe Pelletier honors Peter Forsberg, who’ll have his number retired tonight by the Colorado Avalanche.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: I try to forget those endless, failed attempts at a career comeback, preferring to remember Forsberg before injuries hobbled him. Truly, one of the all-time greats.
MATCHSTICKS AND GASOLINE: Justin Azevedo make twenty predictions for the Calgary Flames this season. Among them: Brent Sutter makes it past Christmas as head coach, and we won’t make it out of October before the first Jarome Iginla trade rumor surfaces.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Some folks have avoided the rush and included Iginla in their trade rumor predictions for the season. If the Flames get off to a good start, that’ll keep Iginla’s name out of the rumor mill.
PENSBURGH.COM: “FrankD” observed James Neal looked good in the Penguins season-opener against the Vancouver Canucks, suggesting he may be in for a better season compared to his unmemorable short stint after joining the Pens in a February trade last season.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Sometimes it takes some time for a player to adjust to a new team and a new city. If Neal regains his scoring touch, he’ll provide much-needed scoring depth on the wing, and could perhaps become that valuable wing-man Sidney Crosby’s been lacking for years.
HOCKEYMONKEY.COM: provides an in-depth analysis of fighting in the NHL over the years, with cool graphics for those who don’t like to read statistics.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Very interesting, certainly well-worth checking out. The one that leaped at me was that a hockey fight is more likely to happen in a blowout game than in a closely contested one. Hat tip to Justin Bourne for the link.
TOM BENJAMIN’S HOCKEY BLOG: Tom believes attacking Don Cherry for his recent rant (If you give the players the excuse, they won’t hit; People using the deaths of Boogaard, Rypien and Belak to advance anti-fighting agenda; Former enforcers being hypocritical for suggesting fighting either doesn’t belong in the game or is being phased out) isn’t the correct approach, but rather addressing the issues he raised, as it regards fundamental changes to the game.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: As Tom notes in his post, the proof in the pudding regarding these rules changes implemented by the league to crack down on head shots and blindside hits is whether or not they survive the initial backlash, and while Cherry is part of it, the opinion of the team owners and how a less violent game affects their bottom line will be the determining factor
YOUTUBE: Not a blog post, but a promo for a new movie starring Don Cherry: “The Timeline Repair Man”.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hat tip to Habs Eyes on the Prize.